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Which exfoliating product to use?

THE thing with exfoliating products is that there are so many types to choose from: sugar-based scrubs, gels, creams . . . they all have different levels of abrasion and lather production.

We've got a great selection this week, that cover all aspects of texture and bubble-production, and as ever, some work better than others. In the same way that we prepare the canvas of our bods for tanning, so must we scrape off the last vestiges of our healthy glow (sob).

L'OCCITANE Ultra Rich Body Scrub, €24.95. This is a nice big tub of scrub. Honestly, some of the exfoliants out there are pretty mean. However, this also comes with the issues that tubs-in-the-shower do, which is that it gets diluted with water, no matter how careful you are. I don't know, I think this effects its effectiveness. Anyway, this is a very light scrub, so if you're feeling sensitive, then give this a try. Me, I didn't feel there was enough abrasion.

CLINIQUE Sparkle Skin Body Exfoliator, €20.42. Anything with 'sparkle' in the title is going to get my attention, and as a long-time Clinique fan, you'd think that my critical faculties would be utterly compromised. Not so! This gives good scrub, but doesn't lather up well, which is disappointing. On the other hand, I didn't need to use much to give myself a good going over. So don't be put off by the apparent smallness of the tube.

LUSH Buffy Body Butter, €8.90. The best thing about this is that it comes in a tin and you can bring it with you on holiday. I tend to let up on the beauty regime while away from home, and sometimes regret that lack of, for example, exfoliant. Take Buffy away with you and you'll have no excuse not to keep smooth. Having said that, I didn't find this to have the level of abrasiveness that I look for in a scrub, so day-to-day, I wouldn't go to this. But like I said, its portability is an excellent point in its favour.

BURT'S BEES Mango & Orange Sugar Scrub, €16.95. Most sugar scrubs are a disappointment, as they are too grainy to make for good coverage. But the whole point is the abrasive graininess, right? This manages to have a good texture, and to give great coverage, primarily because the scrub is swimming in oil, which allows it to spread easily. Give it a good stir before you get under the spray, because it makes for slippery work. I felt that the container was a bit small, and encourage Burt to produce a bigger jar.

NUXE Cleansing Exfoliating Shower Cream, €22.50. Nuxe made an amazing bar of exfoliating soap, and I was terribly sad to hear that it had been discontinued. I perked up when I received this, though: all the combined power of soap and exfoliant in a handy shower cream. This is superb for days when you are running behind and don't have time for separate scrub and suds. I found the 'serving size' to be somewhat small, and encourage Nuxe to provide a bigger tube.